India to go with all guns blazing in Vizag for final T20
India shrugged off their embarrassing defeat in opening T20 match in Pune with a commanding show in Ranchi, where they outclassed the island nation by 69 runs to level the series. The Indian batsmen had struggled to cope with the 'green' track in Pune but adjusted well on a slow strip at Ranchi, where they did not put a foot wrong.
The bowlers, too, were in complete control, never letting the Sri Lankan batsmen dominate. Moreover, skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni's captaincy was impressive and all his experiments, be it reshuffling of the batting order or bowling tactics, paid off.
India not only mastered the conditions but also executed their plans to perfection. The flying start that openers Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma provided India, gave Dhoni a chance to experiment with the batting order. The move to send Hardik Pandya ahead of himself and Yuvraj Singh worked well as the young batsman came up with a fiery cameo. In Australia, Pandya did not get an opportunity to show his batting prowess but he certainly made an impression in Ranchi last night.
It required a lot of muscle power and accurate shot selection to get runs and Pandya did a decent job. However, Yuvraj Singh, who came to bat at number seven, did not get enough time and was out for a duck. It will be good if the elegant left-hander get some time to spend in the middle before the next month's World Twenty20.
Dhoni has conceded that it will be difficult to send him up the order since the top-four are doing extremely well but showed intent of giving Yuvraj more chances to bat for longer period.
Till now it was only Rohit who was tormenting the rival bowlers but with Dhawan also striking form, Indian batting wears a more assured look.
The Sri Lankan pace trio of Kasun Rajitha, Dushmantha Chameera and Dasun Shanaka had wreaked havoc in Pune but they were hammered around in Ranchi by the in-form Indian batsman and the visiting bowlers are unlikely to get any respite.
Thisara Perera got a hat-trick but it came too late. Sri Lanka would hope that their batsmen do better, specially Tillakaratne Dilshan, who is the most experienced in the squad in the absence of many seniors.
With the series poised at 1-1, both the teams will be keen to end it on the winning note, going into Asia Cup and then World Twenty20 high on confidence.
T20 is a fickle format but it looks extremely difficult for the Sri Lankans to topple the home team unless they raise their game by several notches.
India: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Suresh Raina, Yuvraj Singh, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Pawan Negi, Ashish Nehra, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Harbhajan Singh.
Sri Lanka: Dinesh Chandimal (Captain), Dushmantha Chameera, Niroshan Dickwella, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Binura Fernando, Dilhara Fernando, Asela Gunaratne, Danushka Gunathilaka, Chamara Kapugedera, Thisara Perera, Seekkuge Prasanna, Kasun Rajitha, Sachithra Senanayake, Dasun Shanaka, Milinda Siriwardana, Jeffrey Vandersay. Match starts at 19:30 HRS.